The holiday season is a wonderful time for surrounding yourself with loved ones while sharing meals and partaking in happy traditions.
This is a totally normal and healthy way to deal with your sadness. Honoring the life of a deceased loved one can mean feeling obligated to continue traditions they passed down to you like making a specific meal on Christmas, for example. Instead, take one or two traditions you treasured and combine them with new ones to help you move on, Mendez advised.
The holidays are full of stressful obligations, like social gatherings, gift giving, cooking and volunteering. Give yourself permission to cut back on your commitments in order to have space to heal. People may look forward to your holiday cookies each year or hope you come to the office party, but you should also know that they will understand if you pull back considering your loss.
Connecting with others who share your experiences can help you avoid isolation, which could increase the risk of depression, Mendez added. Accepting and addressing your loss is an important step in the grieving process.
And while the holidays are a busy time, your mental and emotional well-being are too important to neglect. Exhaustion, loss of appetite and feelings of apathy and hopelessness can be signs that your grief might be putting you at risk for depression.
Grief experts warn this could lead to unhealthy behaviors, like excess alcohol consumption, withdrawing from social situations or self harm. The first holiday without your loved one is difficult.
While nothing will ever replace your loss, taking care of yourself, spending time remembering your loved one, and enjoying the traditions of the holiday season can alleviate some of the pain while helping you progress in your grieving. Grief is the process of adapting to change created by the irrevocable loss of the loved one.
While your celebrations may never be the same, they can still be joyful as you remember your loved one. News Politics Entertainment Communities. Opinion HuffPost Personal Videos.
Mendez recommended seeking treatment or support to help you if the grief feels unbearable. Feeling More Gassy Than Usual?
Before he died he made me promise to go on holiday with his brother, wife thought of leaving the house for two weeks and going on holiday without him. I suggest writing to his brother if you can't face a one to one and just. If someone you care about is suffering through the pain of first holidays without someone they love, there are things you can do.